News ID: 321093
Published: 0926 GMT April 18, 2022

NBA playoffs: Bucks bounce back to beat Bulls; Celtics edge Nets

NBA playoffs: Bucks bounce back to beat Bulls; Celtics edge Nets
MORRY GASH/AP

Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) dunks during Game 1 of their first round NBA playoff victory over the Bulls in Milwaukee, WI, US, on April 17, 2022.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 27 points and 16 rebounds, and the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks recovered after blowing a 16-point lead to beat the sixth-seeded Chicago Bulls 93-86 in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference first-round playoff series Sunday.

Jrue Holiday's 3-pointer with 5:03 left was part of an 8-0 run that gave the Bucks an 85-78 edge. The Bulls got the margin down to one but could never regain the lead, as Zach LaVine missed a potential tying 3-pointer from nearly 30 feet away with 29 seconds left, The Associated Press reported.

The Bucks, who have won 17 of their last 18 meetings with the Bulls, grabbed an early 32-16 lead and threatened to put this game out of reach early. But they struggled to score the rest of the way.

After shooting 53.8% (14 of 26) in the first quarter, the Bucks made just 34.5% of their attempts (20 of 58) the rest of the way. They had an equal number of turnovers and baskets – 14 – in the second half.

They finished with 21 turnovers. They scored just three points in the first 6 minutes, 57 seconds of the fourth quarter.

Brook Lopez scored 18 points, Holiday had 15, Khris Middleton had 11 and Bobby Portis added 10. Portis also had 12 rebounds.

Vucevic had 24 points and 17 rebounds but shot 9 of 27 for the Bulls. LaVine had 18 points and 10 rebounds while shooting 6 of 19.

 

Buzzer-beater

 

Jayson Tatum made a layup at the buzzer on a pass from Marcus Smart to give Boston a dramatic 115-114 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on in Game 1 of their series.

Tatum scored 31 points, the last two on the first buzzer-beater of his career. It was Bostons first in the postseason since Paul Pierce in 2010 against the Heat.

Jaylen Brown added 23 points for the Celtics, who host Game 2 on Wednesday. Al Horford had 20 points and 15 rebounds, and Smart finished with 20 points, including four 3-pointers.

Kyrie Irving finished with 39 points, including 18 in the fourth quarter.

Durant added 23 points but shot just 9 of 24.

Elsewhere, Chris Paul scored 19 of his 30 points during a brilliant fourth-quarter shooting display and the Phoenix Suns beat the New Orleans Pelicans 110-99 in Game 1.

The top-seeded Suns needed Pauls big finish despite dominating most of the game. The Pelicans shook off a slow start, cutting a 23-point deficit to 79-71 by the end of the third.

Paul shot 12 for 16 from the field, including 4 of 6 on 3-pointers.

Devin Booker — who finished with 25 points — hit a 3-pointer on the opening possession and the Suns never trailed, using a ferocious defensive effort to quickly take control.

CJ McCollum led the Pelicans with 25 points, but struggled with his shooting much of the night. He finished 9 of 25 from the field.

 

MVP finalists

 

Reigning NBA Most Valuable Player Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets, Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid and the BucksAntetokounmpo were named 2021-22 NBA MVP finalists by the league on Sunday.

NBA Coach of the Year finalists include Taylor Jenkins of Memphis, Erik Spoelstra of Eastern Conference top seeds Miami and Monty Williams of the Western Conference top seeds and overall NBA-leading Suns.

The winners will be announced during the NBA playoffs.

 

 

   
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